World Cup: Ireland v Russia
Venue: Kobe Misaki Stadium, Kobe City Date: Thursday, 3 October Kick-off: 11:15 BST
Coverage: Commentary on BBC Radio 5 Live & Radio Ulster, plus live text on BBC Sport website & app

Ireland defence coach has called on the side to use their shock defeat by Japan as motivation for the rest of their World Cup campaign.

Despite the loss, Ireland will secure a quarter-final spot with bonus-point wins against Russia on Thursday and Samoa on 12 October.

“I think a setback, you can use it in the right manner,” said Farrell.

“They’re not ideal but if you use them to your advantage they can be powerful.”

Just five days after the stunning result in Shizuoka, Ireland have an opportunity to get their campaign back on track at Kobe’s indoor Misaki Stadium.

Japan are in pole position in Pool A with nine points from two games, with second-placed Ireland sitting one point ahead of Scotland and Samoa.

Andy Farrell celebrates scoring a try for England against Tonga in the 2007 World Cup

Farrell recalls England’s 2007 recovery

On Wednesday, Farrell – who will take over as head coach from after the tournament – insisted Ireland’s World Cup aspirations were not over despite the disappointing loss.

“You can look at the last three World Cups, South Africa losing to Japan (in 2015) and losing in the semi-final 20-18,” said the former England assistant coach.

“In 2011, France seemed to be disarray throughout that competition and there’s a debate on whether they should have won or not in the final.

“In 2007 I was part of the England squad that got a thrashing off South Africa. There was a bit of turmoil within that camp and they managed to get to the final and (there was) a debatable try that was disallowed.”

Earlier this week fly-half , who will captain Ireland on Thursday, said the short turnaround is in Ireland’s favour as it gives them a chance to reassume control of their campaign quickly.

Since arriving in Kobe on Sunday, players and coaches have been keen to highlight their honest assessment of what went wrong in Japan and the unity of the team.

“After a few days of understanding the reasons why (we lost), we are in good spirits,” said Farrell.

“We are back on track and ready to prove a point.”

Aki backs Irish to ‘step up’

Schmidt has made 11 changes for the Russia game, with Garry Ringrose named to start at outside centre again having played 80 minutes in both of Ireland’s opening fixtures.

Bundee Aki returns to join the Leinster man in midfield after being withdrawn in the first half of the opening game against Scotland having failed a head injury assessment.

Given the nature of the last result, there is little Ireland can do against Russia that will restore confidence levels among supporters to the level it was before the Japan match, however Aki is confident the side will move their campaign forward on Thursday.

“What I’ve noticed about this team (is that) we grow together as a group,” he said.

“As a team we always focus on ourselves.

“When the pressure is on and everyone is talking us down, everyone steps up.”


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